MADISON (WKOW) -- Victim advocates say less than one in four incidents of domestic violence are reported and for some, trying to find help can be even harder.
UNIDOS Against Domestic Violence has been providing support to victims and survivors of domestic abuse in the Latino community for nearly 16 years. Not only do they have bi-lingual advocates, but they also understand the needs of families who may be in particularly difficult situations.
"Some of these victims, they don't even have family here, they don't speak the language, they are completely isolated, they don't have transportation, they don't even have their own phone," said UNIDOS executive director Cecilia Gillhouse.
Gillhouse said the tragic death of 2-year-old Yandel Castillo has affected many at the advocacy center. Police say Yandel Castillo's murder was at the hands of his father, Jesus Castillo-Dimas.
"All their fears come out and they don't know what to do, they don't know if they're going to survive or if this is going to happen to their kids," Gillhouse said about victims and survivors of domestic violence.
While the small non-profit has been run by two full-time staffers for years, the size of the Latino population in our area has continued to grow. Census data shows the Hispanic populations in Dane and Rock counties have doubled from 2000 to 2010. Gillhouse said the number of support meetings at UNIDOS has also grown.
Gillhouse said while completely understanding rights and language may be a barrier for Latina women, there is help available. "Look, you're not alone, we're here to help you," Gillhouse said.
You can contact UNIDOS Against Domestic Violence toll free at 1-800-510-9195.
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